By Tosin Ajirire
The President/Chief Executive Officer of US-based Nollywood and African Film Critics Awards (NAFCA), Dr. Victor Olatoye, has raised the alarm over the sudden disappearance of his priceless artwork tagged, Aiye Social Media.
The metallic sculpture, which was made by a distinguished Nigerian artist and worth $2.5 million US dollars, got lost in Germany en-route the United States of America.
According to Olatoye, who worked closely with the artist for a period of 14 months in designing the iPad component of the artwork, the cargo, which weighs 220kg and measures 4x4x8ft departed Lagos for Frankfort, Germany on April 23 after being scanned out by an international logistic company at 11.26pm.
He explained further: “It arrived their facility the next day, April 24 at 8:45pm and was scanned in. They normally scan each and every cargo every 24 hours, according to the investigative department of the logistic company, but our cargo was declared missing within 24 hours. It’s rare to lose an artwork of that size in transit.
“The artwork was appraised for $1.8 million to $2.5 million US dollars. We worked with the investigative department of the international logistic company for over three weeks to locate the masterpiece until it was officially declared missing a few days ago. It’s our fervent hope that it would somehow surface one day so people could appreciate the masterpiece at a museum. This is a mystery that we are all eager to solve. Please contact the local police or Interpol with any information regarding the artwork at 1-202-616-9000.”
Aiye Social Media is about the life of a young man who is excited about his new Ipad and while walking home, he pays more attention to his social media likes than his surroundings of the busy Lagos street. The art is fabricated and made out of bronze, scraps metals and cold cast; finished with gold plated components, polished bronze and industrial paint. The masterpiece was meant for auction and part of the proceeds was to be donated to some foundations including Boys & Girls of America, North Carolina Museum of Art, and Tosin Foundation of Nigeria.